Reviews of National Policies for Education

1990-0198 (online)
1563-4914 (print)
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Reviews of National Policies for Education offer customised, in-depth analysis and advice to assist policy makers in developing and implementing education policy. Individual reviews can focus on a specific policy area, a particular level of education or a country’s entire education system. These reviews are conducted at the request of the country concerned.

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Reviews of National Policies for Education: Higher Education in the Dominican Republic 2012

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30 July 2012
9789264177055 (PDF) ;9789264177000(print)

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Following the 2008 OECD review of education policies in the Dominican Republic, the examining team was tasked to assess the condition of higher education in the Dominican Republic, to evaluate policies for higher education and research, and to identify future policy options to help meet the nation’s needs.

Against the background report prepared by the Dominican authorities and information supplied in meetings in the course of site visits, this OECD report provides an analysis of the higher education sector within the economic, social and political context of the Dominican Republic. It looks into access, quality and relevance, the effectiveness and governance of the system, its financing as well as its research and innovation capacity. The report concludes with a list of pragmatic recommendations for policy action.

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  • Foreword
    The Dominican Republic has one of the strongest economies among the middle income countries of the world, and the government has set itself ambitious goals for its social and economic development. The development capacity of the country, however, depends on its human capital – an area with considerable shortcomings due to major deficiencies in the education sector at all levels.
  • Acronyms
  • Executive Summary
    The Dominican Republic has one of the strongest economies among the middle income countries of the world, but is one of the least equitable societies.
  • Introduction
    This chapter presents the purpose of the review, introduces the review team and describes the scope of the review and the sources of information used. It concludes with a definition of tertiary education programmes internationally and in the Dominican Republic.
  • Context
    This chapter gives a description of the national context for the review, including the Dominican economy and demography, the social role of education and the educational attainment of the adult population in the Dominican Republic. It describes previous OECD recommendations on higher education in the Dominican Republic, and responses and initiatives of the government, notably the National Development Strategy 2010-2030, the Ten-Year Plan for Higher Education 2008-2018, and the Strategic Plan for Science, Technology and Innovation 2008-2018.
  • Access to Higher Education
    This chapter gives a description of participation in and provision of higher education in the Dominican Republic. It discusses admissions criteria and selection processes, student retention and students’ preparedness for higher education; which lead the review team to the following conclusions: (i) lack of preparedness of students transferring from the general education system into higher education; (ii) importance of providing relevant information, career orientation and counselling services to students both before they enter higher education and again as part of student support services for new entrants; and (iii) absence of accurate comparable data from HEIs to facilitate policy making, either because data is not being collected or is not being made available to the Statistics Department of the Ministry.
  • Quality, Relevance and Effectiveness
    This chapter explores the extent to which conditions in the Dominican Republic are conducive to increasing human capital formation and contributing to economic growth. The conditions identified are: (i) that students complete tertiary education, (ii) that the curriculum is relevant to labour market requirements, (iii) that the education experienced is of good quality, and (iv) that the economy has capacity to absorb graduates productively.
  • Future Demand for Higher Education
    This chapter explores future demand for higher education in the Dominican Republic which will be shaped by the interaction of several factors: (i) demographic growth in the relevant age cohorts; (ii) the scale and shape of labour market requirements and opportunities; (iii) changes in rates of educational participation among different cohorts; (iv) the attractiveness of postsecondary study relative to other options, such as direct entry to the labour market, including perceptions of private economic and social benefits relative to costs; and (v) social norms and pressures, including family circumstances and aspirations.
  • The Structure of Higher Education Provision
    This chapter discusses the structure of higher education provision, arguing that the Dominican Republic needs a much more diversified structure of higher education to meet the varying needs and circumstances of learners cost-effectively and to produce the range of graduates with the mix of skills required by the changing economy. It provides arguments why there is a need for diversity of provision, notably by means of improved learning costeffectiveness, increased responsiveness to labour market dynamics, widened student choice and strengthened system sustainability. The chapter concludes with the internationalisation strategy of the Dominican Republic, arguing that a more comprehensive internationalisation strategy is needed. It provides a set of policy recommendations on how to achieve a more comprehensive strategy and to support diversification in higher education.
  • Sustainable Financing
    This chapter discusses funding of higher education in the Dominican Republic and analyses four issues: (i) resource mobilisation: is the Dominican Republic investing sufficiently in higher education? (ii) resource allocation: are public resources being distributed methodically, and in a way that encourages innovation and rewards performance? (iii) resource utilisation: are available resources used efficiently and effectively? (iv) equity: are public funds distributed among various population groups in the Dominican Republic in a fair and equitable way? The chapter concludes with a number of recommendations for improvement, including on: achieving structural reforms through diversification of the systems through increased private provision and increased private share of costs in public higher education; arrangements for extending scholarships and loans to a wider range of students in public and private higher education institutions; and increasing the capital available to FUNDAPEC in order to increase loan capacity.
  • Scientific Research, Technology and Innovation
  • System Steering and Institutional Governance
    This chapter describes governance of higher education institutions in the Dominican Republic, encompassing structures, relationship and processes through which, at both national and institutional levels, policies for higher education are developed, implemented and reviewed. It provides a description of system level steering in the Dominican Republic and institutional level governance and other institutional governance models. Governance of the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (UASD) and recent reforms are discussed separately. This chapter also looks into the role of the ministry in higher education governance.
  • Conclusions and Recommendations
    This chapter provides a short conclusion and presents a list of 15 recommendations which have been made in the different chapters of the review.
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